AP NEWS

Delta debuts new uniforms made by Lands’ End

May 30, 2018 GMT

A few dozen Delta Air Lines employees had a plum assignment on Tuesday — strolling down the fashion runway instead of the airport runway.

At airports in Atlanta, Minneapolis and Los Angeles, they were showing off Delta’s new uniforms, designed by fashion designer Zac Posen and manufactured by Lands’ End, of Dodgeville.

Scrapping the traditional navy-and-red that Delta employees have worn for the past 30 years, the new garb for flight attendants and ticket agents is primarily purple — or as Delta calls it, Passport Plum.

On Tuesday, Delta’s 64,000 employees debuted the uniforms at the airline’s ticket counters, airplanes and hangars worldwide.

It is the largest project to date for Lands’ End’s uniform division, both in terms of the number of people to be outfitted and the revenue it will provide, said Joe Ferreri, senior vice president and head of Lands’ End Outfitters.

“It means a lot to us,” Ferreri said. “It shows off not just the legendary service that we’re known for but also the quality of the apparel that we manufacture.”

Lands’ End has not disclosed the financial value of the contract.

“We are happy to provide this level of quality, style and global sophistication to the professional men and women who represent Delta so well every day,” Delta CEO Ed Bastian said.

The agreement between Delta and Lands’ End was signed in 2016 and Delta employees have played a big role in developing the designs and choosing the fabrics throughout the process, the airline said. For three months, 1,000 Delta employees tested the uniforms to see how well they would work for the job functions, weather changes and different body types.

Focus groups, job shadowing and recommendations from more than 30,000 surveys led to 170 alterations, the airline said.

“These uniforms were built to keep Delta employees safe, comfortable and always ready to fly,” Lands’ End CEO Jerome Griffith said.

The new outfits had a soft launch in January, Ferreri said. He said Lands’ End also offered fitting clinics at Delta hubs around the world where the airline’s employees were invited in for personal fittings. He said 10,000 to 20,000 Delta employees participated.

“Our team traveled all over the country, to the United Kingdom, Hawaii and Asia. It was just remarkable,” Ferreri said.

Delta is not the only U.S. airline that Lands’ End is suiting up. The Dodgeville apparel company won a contract in January to supply uniforms for 51,000 American Airlines employees, including flight attendants. Alaska Airlines is also a client.

Lands’ End, founded in 1963, is known for its casual clothing, accessories and home products. Its business outfitters division has been operating for 25 years.

The company reported $1.4 billion in revenue for its 2017 fiscal year with net income of $28.2 million.

Lands’ End stock closed at $19.90 on Tuesday, up 20 cents a share from Friday’s close.